Saturday Morning was the last field trip of the Citizens Leadership Academy. We were led by Scott Adams, the Director of the Las Vegas Redevelopment Agency. The RDA is charged with recruiting new business and development into the downtown.
Our bus trip took us thru the Arts District, Union Park, The New Fremont East Entertainment District, sites of various existing, planned, under construction, and wishful thinking high rise condos, the REI Stadium Project, and many of the 160 different projects that are on the books.
There’s a lot of new jobs coming to downtown as a result of these projects. The Brain Center, the Cancer Center, The Water District and Water Authority, The expansion of the outlet mall, A new city hall, Lady Luck and 3rd Street are back on track with new owners, 15 new venues on the books for Fremont East, and maybe even a grocery store!
New jobs, bring new people, and living close to work and eliminating both the time and gas of the long commute is also a driving force that will help with the restoration of our Vintage Urban Core neighborhoods. Of course, it’s their job to give us the good news, and the only project that he didn’t sound thrilled with was the REI Stadium, which made me very happy to hear.
Of course, I know several of the 90 parcel owners within the REI boundaries, and they all seem to have mixed feelings. Yes they want to get their 7 million an acre, but also feel it won’t be good for the arts district. A project like that pushes the value of all downtown land to the point that only an MGM or Harrah’s or similar size organization will ever be able to use it. They won’t be building the 4 or 5 story boutique and affordable loft and apartment type projects with ground floor cafes, shops and galleries that I always envisioned for the area. Time will tell, whether REI can pull off their dream without taking down the arts district in the process.
My dream has always been housing for hip, fun urban dwellers. NOT tourist hotel rooms, and creating a whole new leg for the strip was certainly not part of my dream.
The RDA has a great tool if you want to find out about all the different projects regardless of where they are in the development process. Check it out. It’s fun and educational. Interactive Downtown Projects Map
Here’s another tool I use a lot in preparing to meet with buyers and sellers, and to research all kinds of things. You’re welcome to use it also. You can quickly zoom to any property, get the ownership and assessor information, see the birds eye view,get the parcel number etc. Interactive MAP OF LAS VEGAS It works for all 3 cities and unincorporated Clark County.